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National Gypsum Plans to Triple Paper Capacity at Alabama Plant
Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, 26 September 2006 -- National Gypsum Company, a leading manufacturer of gypsum wallboard, announced today it plans to more than triple paper manufacturing capacity at its Oxford, Alabama, plant. The expansion will include installing a state-of-the-art paper machine with a tentative startup in late 2009. The company will invest approximately USD 115 million in the project, bringing employment at the plant to 93 persons.

"Our expansion in Alabama builds on one of National Gypsum's key operating strategies – vertical integration," said CEO Thomas C. Nelson. "By owning our own raw material supplies, including paper, we can better control costs and quality. The incentives offered by the State of Alabama and the support of Leon Smith, mayor of Oxford, helped make the expansion possible."

"This company has been part of our community for 50 years, and this new project, creating 15 new jobs, will only strengthen our relationship," said mayor Leon Smith.

National Gypsum recently announced wallboard capacity expansions with new high-speed plants near Charlotte, North Carolina, and Phoenix, Arizona. The additional paper capacity will be needed to support these expansions. While the building is erected and the machine installed, National Gypsum will continue to produce paper on its existing equipment in Alabama.

"National Gypsum has had a highly successful operation at our Alabama plant for 50 years," Nelson continued. "Our associates have produced excellent operating results. We know this new machine will be in good hands."

The new three-ply paper fourdrinier machine will use state-of-the-art technology to produce a strong, yet light-weight sheet of paper. With the technology, less fiber is used to produce the sheet and, because of the reduced weight, the company can ship more paper per truck to its wallboard plants. The machine allows for efficient production of 54-inch paper as well as 48-inch paper. This project builds on the company's previous fourdrinier paper-making experience at its Pryor, Oklahoma, plant.

National Gypsum operates four paper mills, recycling 100% waste paper to produce the facing paper for its gypsum wallboard. The company is one of the largest waste paper recyclers in the nation.

Headquartered in Charlotte, National Gypsum is a leading supplier of wallboard, interior finishing products, and cement board to the construction industry. It has a network of 40 facilities in North America, including its own paper mills and gypsum mines and quarries.

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